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IST 605: Makerspaces 101

Resources for librarians and educators about makerspaces.

Makerspace Reference Books

Invent to Learn is a practical guide written by Sylvia Martinez and Gary Stagner that provides tips and guidance to educators on how to support making in the classroom, library, makerspace, and any other learning environments. This book discusses the maker movement, makerspaces within learning environments, as well as the maker community. Sylvia Martinez, a former aerospace engineer with a background in education technology, co-wrote this book as she works to advocate for authentic learning using real world design principles, modern technology, and hands-on experience. Gary Stagner, the other co-writer of Invent to Learn is an internationally recognized educator having taught students from preschool to doctoral programs.

Makerspaces in School: A Month-by-Month Schoolwide Model for Building Meaningful Makerspaces by Lacy Brejcha is a guide for implementing a makerspace within a learning environment. This book provides educators and librarians with research-based knowledge that will serve the educators as they create and maintain an effective and meaningful makerspace. The author of this book, Lacy Brejcha, has been an elementary teacher for over 15 years and currently fills many roles within her school including the role of the makerspace teacher.

The Art of Tinkering by Karen Wilkinson and Mike Petrich is a collection of artwork, projects, and exhibits that celebrate a new way to learn, in which people our creating their own knowledge through making and doing. This book includes projects and statements by a number of makers including but not limited to Scott Weaver, Moxie, Tim Hunkin, and AnnMarie Thomas.

Makerspace Activity Books

The Big Book of Makerspace Projects written by Colleen and Aaron Graves is a guide featuring dozens of projects that could be completed with makers of all ages, skill levels, and all maker types. This book incorporates projects that could be completed within high tech makerspaces as well as projects that can be completed within low tech makerspaces. The authors of this book, Colleen Graves and Aaron Graves, are both experienced school librarians.

The book Maker Workshop: 14 Amazing Projects You Can Make Today by Alison Buxton provides guidance, tips, and inspiration for a number of different projects that students can make within a makerspace. Students could follow the instructions step by step or use the pictures, guidance, and tips to make their own creations.

Makerspace Read-Alouds

The picture book Be a Maker written by Katey Howes and illustrated by Elizabet Vuković is about a girl that makes a lot of different creations with things that she finds. She makes blueprints, telescopes, towers, maps, spaceships, and more. This would be a great book to include in a classroom or school library makerspace to inspire children of some of the different things that they can create or make.

  • An online read aloud of the story could be found here.

A young girl likes to make creations. One day, she wants to make something magnificent. The young girl hires an assistant, makes blueprints, and then creates something that is ... not magnificent. The girl tries and tries and tries but none of her creations are what she imaged. The girl realizes that all of her creations are not all wrong. Each creation has somethings that are right. The little girl gets back to work and she makes her most magnificent thing. This would be a great book to include in a makerspace as it depicts a girl making something. The girl first plans out what she wants to create and then begins to build her creation which is a great method for students to follow within a makerspace setting. In the story, the girl is using her creativity and imagination, and her problem solving skills to build the creation that she envisioned.

  • An online read aloud of the story could be found here.

The book With My Hands: Poems About Making Things written by Amy VanDerwater and illustrated by Lou Fancher and Steve Johnson is a compilation of poems about making things. This book consists of 26 different poems about all different types of ways something could be made such as building, baking, folding, drawing, shaping, and more. This would be an inspiring read for students to use their creativity and imagination to make something.

The picture book Made by Maxine written by Ruth Spiro and illustrated by Holly Hatam follows the story of a girl named Maxine. Maxine enjoys making new things from old things. This story shows how Maxine uses her creativity, imagination, and critical thinking skills to make new creations out of old items she has found. This would be a great book to include in any makerspace with young students, especially in low technology makerspaces.

  • An online read aloud of the story could be found here.